Trendy Shoreditch is to become a foodie heaven now that top Soho chef and restaurateur Mark Hix has permission to turn a tram shed into one of the largest restaurants in London. Hix also plans to offer cookery classes and host a farmers’ market on the site.
Plans for the rambling Grade II-listed shed on Rivington Street upset some locals. The South Shoreditch Community Association raised fears that having “one of the largest” restaurants in London on their doorsteps would cause noise and inconvenience to local residents. But Hackney Council officers said that having a high-end dining room would enhance the area
James Walker-Osborn, sales manager of east London estate agent Stirling Ackroyd agrees. “It will help continue the gentrification of the area,” he said.
Prices on Rivington Street, where the late Alexander McQueen once had a studio, are already high. You might expect to pay circa £1m for a large warehouse apartment, although better value is to be found in the streets off Brick Lane, about ten minutes’ walk away, where you could pick up a two-bedroom flat from £400,000.
However Walker-Osborn believes that having a big name restaurant will introduce the area to City professionals who currently prefer west London. “It will bring in people who would not normally be attracted to the area, and would overlook Shoreditch, and that could be a driver for prices. There is a limited stock and if you have a bigger pool of people competing it will edge prices up,” he said.
Paul Williams, a director of Savills, points out that Shoreditch is already well served with bars and restaurants, but agrees that a new opening in an area without big names can drive up prices. “It is not an overnight effect, but if you get this sort of restaurant, then a deli will follow and so it goes. Success breeds success.”